According to a recent warning from Techlicious, there’s a fairly slick scam being foisted on Amazon users. Except maybe it isn’t so slick if you’re paying attention. Here’s a sentence in the warning from Techlicious that caught my eye:
For instance, one tell-tale sign of bogus emails is the presence of sloppy writing in the email — especially misspellings and grammar errors. However, not all scammers failed English 101, so some phishing emails actually do sound and look professional. So, looking for language anomalies may not be 100 percent reliable, but they are usually red flags.
That’s sound advice, but there’s one problem with it.
I maintain several blogs/websites that include contributions from others. I have come to the conclusion that many adults either do not know or do not pay attention to basic rules of grammar. Therefore, I do a fair amount of editing. Yes, it makes me feel needed, but it also makes me feel sad. Why aren’t we more interested in the mechanics of writing and communication?
I don’t consider myself a “Grammar Nazi” — in fact, I believe there are times when one should ignore a fine point of grammar in the interest of good communication. However, my high school English Teacher (Thank you, Mr. Russo.) often said, “You can’t intentionally break the rules of grammar if you don’t know what they are.” He often made this statement when students started whining because they didn’t see the point of learning the rules, keeping us focused on communication and the role those rules play. (We also learned that violating a rule of grammar unintentionally sometimes resulted in communicating something we did not intend to say.)
Well, technology gives us another reason to pay attention in English Class. An inability to recognize fundamental spelling errors and violations of grammatical rules increases the odds you will fall victim to a scam.
Yes, in the larger sense it’s actually about paying attention to detail. I received a phishing email from “Capital1” instead of “Capital One.” In the scam reported by Techlicious, the request to “confirme” your order details is like waving a red flag.
I’m truly excited to report yet another reason to promote a knowledge of “good” writing, including spelling. Aren’t you?